Lifestyle Vehicles

A proper off-road wagon

Puts on a good front: you wouldn't mistake Fortuner for a Hilux.

SUVs with hard-core off-road ability are making a comeback. The latest is the Toyota Fortuner.

A little French head-scratcher

Renault Captur was third most popular car in France for 2015. In New Zealand, not so much.

Little Renault is a loveable thing, but the French character that makes it interesting also limits its appeal to Kiwi drivers.

This Hilux makes no sense

Hilux V6 looks no different to its turbo-diesel sibling, but packs 175kW beneath the bonnet.

It will make you smile but think of this grunty Toyota as a middle-age-crisis family wagon with a tray.

Audi makes room for EV-SUV

Audi's fully electric SUV will go on sale in 2018.

Audi is already shuffling its other models around to make space for production of its first EV-SUV.

Last ever Defender celebrated video

More than 700 invited guests gathered to send off the Defender on January 29.

A moment of silence - or perhaps some diesel clatter - as we mark the end of Defender production after 68 years.

Why the Ford Ranger is No 1

Design has a lot to do with Ranger's success: it's a good-looking truck... that looks like a truck.

What are the factors behind the rise and rise of Ranger in the sales charts?

Land Rover Defender era ends video

End of the line as the last Land Rover Defender rolls off the production line in Solihull.

The last Land Rover Defender, the famous 4x4 known the world over, has rolled off the production line.

Convertible ute turns heads

Alan Dunn's 2006 Chevrolet SSR.

An eye for the unusual got Timaru man Alan Dunn interested in his Chevrolet SSR.

Idiot's guide to boat-towing

Top tip for towing: attach the boat to the trailer.

Maintenance and maybe a little practice can save you a lot of grief at the boat ramp.

Road test: Toyota Land Cruiser VX

No, the Land Cruiser 200-series hasn't been made bigger - just bolder, with new frontal styling.

Never mind the outlandish face - there's a host of new safety technology in the Land Cruiser VX.

VW's electric off-roader

GTE Active concept is based on the next-generation Tiguan SUV, due for launch this year.

Who says SUVs have to be diesel? A new concept-car from VW can go off-roading on all-electric power.

Jeep Wrangler ute for NZ

AEV Wrangler ute is an aftermarket conversion that gets the official Jeep importer's stamp of approval for NZ.

Wishes can come true: a double-cab ute version of the Jeep Wrangler is being launched in NZ next month.

I want my MPVs

Can an MPV be a luxury car as well? The Mercedes-Benz V250 makes a strong case.

Multi-Purpose Vehicles don't sell in great numbers in this market. But maybe they should.

Trolley holiday heaven in Wanaka

Dakota Rowe, 11, of Wanaka, trials a trolley he and others were building in Wanaka.

Wanaka trolley fans wheeling out new designs.

New utes from Mercedes, Hyundai

Official Mercedes-Benz rendering of its new ute, which will share a platform with the Nissan Navara.

Two major carmakers are pursuing the lifestyle ute market with forthcoming models.

This Hilux means business

Dark matter: mid-grade Hilux SR comes in many colours, but the steel wheels are always painted basic black.

Here's the Hilux that Mad Max would use to bring the firewood in.

Subby v Mitsi crossover clash

Crossover Clash - Mitsubishi Outlander v Subaru Foester

Which is better, the newly revised Mitsubishi Outlander or the realigned Subaru Forester?

Touch of F-Type in this Rangie

Nobody's sure what HST stands for, but everybody's impressed with what it can do.

New driver-focused model from Range Rover is powered by the supercharged V6 engine from the F-Type S.

Holiday life's a Carnival

The third-generation Kia Carnival, a big eight-seater that potentially rates as the best people-mover on the Kiwi market.

This big eight-seater is potentially the best people-mover on the market in New Zealand.

Big Merc muscles up on Ladies Mile

The new Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d Coupe resting near the entrance to Awakino Gorge.

We describe what it's like to drive Mercedes-Benz' new BMW X6-buster, the GLE 350d Coupe?

Mazda ute still a beaut

Minor facelift for Mazda BT-50, but it's still got that smiley face.

The new flagship BT-50 GSX is part-workhorse, part anti-fashion statement.

On the water: Turning tricks in the bay

Mark Davis driving Trickster out of Picton harbour, with his son Jacob behind him, and boat guests William Ross, Vaughn Wittig and Alex Wittig.

"I switch off from life and business, get in my boat and think, 'right, let's go skiing'."

Why Kiwis love utes so much

Kiwis like utes like the Ford Ranger because they can do this. Even if many of us don't actually do this.

OPINION: Utes may be thirsty and heavy but we love them and that has a lot to do with the failings of modern SUVs.

Small SUV invasion

Small SUV stoush - Honda HR-V vs Suzuki Vitara

SUVs have gone viral to every market niche and we put two of the latest compact examples - a Honda and a Suzuki - head-to-head.

Away from the rat race

Ken Rowe at Lochmara Lodge, his beloved launch Kahurangi at anchor in a bay behind him.

When Ken Rowe retired he set off in his 30-foot launch and "disappeared into the Sounds"

Indulging a need for speed

Blenheim man Dale Woods, right, and friend Michael Larson take Dale's self-built jet boat for a spin.

In the final part of our series talking to seafarers about their boats, Kat Duggan talks to a boatie with a need for speed.

RX: First luxury crossover

Sheer real estate of large-SUV shape gave Lexus RX designers plenty of space to play in.

Lexus as aggressive as Mercedes-Benz in launching of a number of new SUV models to target the fastest growing sector of the luxury car market.

Mutated Kia goes X-rated

Kia X-Car: a more Hollywood, less-attractive version of the new Sportage SUV.

Kia reveals the latest in its long line of superhero-inspired ways to make its cars look worse.

A tale of two Prado engines

A pair of Prados - one with turbocharged diesel power, the other with a petrol V6 under its bonnet.

Toyota is playing the field by continuing to offer the Prado SUV with both petrol and diesel power.

On the water: Making new memories

Dave Norton catches cod in the Cook Strait, on his boat Ocean Grown.

In the fourth part of our series talking to seafarers about their boats, Kat Duggan learns about one man's love for the ocean.

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